Paris to launch fleet of 20 000 e-bikes to curb pollution

Paris is one of the great European cities and has a transport system to match, but even the French capital has its issues regarding pollution.

This is why the city’s regional transport agency, Ile-de-France Mobilités, has proposed a plan where it will make a fleet of 10 000 e-bikes available to residents for long-term rental, with a view to double that number to 20 000 in coming years.

The scheme is scheduled to take effect as of September 2019, and would be the world’s largest e-bike program if implemented, according to Reuters.

The system for this fleet is called Véligio and aims to reduce both car usage and pollution in the city, although it’s unclear what kind of effect such a plan would have, or indeed how long before it begins to reap benefits in terms of improved air quality in Paris.

As for the finer details of the service itself, it could cost an estimated €40 (~R571) a month to rent one of the e-bikes. There will also be added incentive thrown in with employers covering 50 percent of the rental cost, akin to the way it currently works with metro passes in the region.

With regard to the bikes being proposed, the Vélib bicycles as they are called, are said to run for an average of nine kilometres before the battery packs up, after which riders will have to use some good old-fashioned pedal power to get to their desired destination.

The entire scheme will cost an estimated €111 million to implement over the space of six years, which is far from cheap. In the long run though it could prove of some benefit and very well serve as a blueprint for other European cities, as well as regions where pollution is a problem.

We’re still a little hesitant for such a scheme to be launched locally, however, as the layout of our metros aren’t really conducive for cycling, especially for the daily commute to and from work.


[Image – CC 0 Pixabay]


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